BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – The Capital Area Road and Bridge District on Monday gathered for a meeting to discuss the environmental impacts of the Mississippi River Bridge project near Baton Rouge. 

In a previous meeting, the committee narrowed the location of the bridge from 30 to three potential areas, which are all in Iberville Parish. 

Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development Secretary Eric Kalivoda and the committee discussed environmental evaluations and how the project will reduce traffic.  

Kalivoda said they hope to narrow down the location of the new bridge when the environmental documents are completed in the summer of 2024. 

According to Kalivoda, more funding is needed for the south bridge. 

He said last year, the state legislature approved setting aside $300 million dollars for the project.  

A portion of vehicles sales tax will also go towards the funding of the south bridge, along with the payment of tolls from the bridge. 

“It will be a toll bridge and tolls are expected to generate somewhere up to $250 and $300 million,” said Kalivoda. “So we do have a federal amount of money, but it’s not enough to do the whole thing. But it’s a good starting point and we can move forward, I believe, with the resources that are available and start advancing the project.”  

Although locations have been narrowed down, the committee also asked for public comment.

One resident, Laura Comeaux, used the opportunity to mention her concern about her 60-acre forest.

Comeaux said, “I’m hoping that when they get boots on the ground, and really do the environmental review that they see this forest for themselves and decide to eliminate it as one of the three options and consider the public’s opinion and the private landowner as highly as they do the industry landowner. ”

Corey Landry, the project manager for the LA-1/LA-415 Connector Project, said the construction of the project could take three years.

Click here to see more about the meeting.